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    Tracey Groves, left.

Tracey Groves finds her groove

Tracey Groves is half the woman she used to be and twice the person she was.

The mathematics of that is simple. She has shed a staggering 65 kilograms since determining to change her life in January of last year, and more recently, since October, becoming a runner.

“I’ve gained some self-respect,” the 48-year-old former journalist cum primary school teacher said after winning Stawell and Ararat Cross Country Club’s five-kilometre handicap at Dunneworthy Common.

“I played state level netball in Queensland, but gave that away when I became busy, first with work and then a mother. Somewhere along the way I lost sight of who I was and who I wanted to be,” she said.



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Groves said her weakness was carbohydrates – butter, cake, sugar, bread – and when the kilograms piled on she looked the other way rather than the way forward.

“I had never run five kilometres in my life until I joined Parkrun,” she said.

“I took baby steps at first – a bit of a walk and a bit of a run until there were no walks. 

“I changed my diet and my whole outlook changed. I now prioritise my life around where my next run will be and I’m happily obsessed.”

Second on debut with the club in Stawell a fortnight ago, Groves quickly found her competitive groove on Sunday, chasing front runners down and charging to the lead with 500 metres to run.

From then she was never challenged and greeted the timekeepers with 1.15 minutes to spare from returning runner Nathan Bendelle with their coach and advisor Sue Blizzard proudly running into third place after giving her protégés a start.

The re-invigorated Groves has returned to swimming with a view to a future triathlon and then a half-marathon.

“You are never too old to try something new,” she said, looking forward to her next challenge, an eight-kilometre Thompson Family Handicap at Ararat’s McDonald Park this Sunday. 

– Keith Lofthouse 

The entire July 29, 2020 edition of The Weekly Advertiser is available online. READ IT HERE!

The entire July 29, 2020 edition of AgLife is available online. READ IT HERE!